For the anthology series, Tanit Phoenix (Death Race 2) serves as its comely Cryptkeeper, introducing tales of double crosses and couplings. Eye candy, aside, what makes this approach interesting is that the episodes span a wide range of genres. For example, “Behind Locked Doors,” which concerns a Lindsay Lohan-esque paparazzi magnet, pays homage to the women-in-prison film, whereas “Girls Gone Dead,” starring Charlie O’Connell as a Joe Francis-style douchebag, plays with supernatural horror.
Many take the scenarios ready-made by James M. Cain dime novels of decades ago and run with them, but the standout half-hours are the ones that do something different. My favorite, “Till Death Do Us Part,” is a comedic look at a bachelorette party that ends with a dead male stripper. It has a handle on the comedy just right, whereas “Speed Date,” easily my least favorite one, exhibits a butterfingered grip.
No matter the subject, all make room for softcore romps, shot with the slickness of any other made-for-cable series. Believe it or not, Femme Fatales would be fun even without these scenes. (That said, I would have killed for this thing to have aired when I was 13.)
Give ’er a spin … when the kids are away, that is, and maybe even the wife, too. I can’t imagine the Mrs. would go for it, no matter how empowering the show’s male creators claim it to be. In the extras, one producer says that in their stories, “The woman always comes out on top.” So to speak. —Rod Lott
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